Hermit Bar Cookies Recipe - Allrecipes.com
Hermit Bar Cookies Recipe
  • READY IN 45 mins

Hermit Bar Cookies

Recipe by  

"This recipe is probably 50 years old - Mom made it for us, and now I make it for our kids - they love these bars. Enjoy!"

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 3 1/2 dozen Change Servings
  • PREP

    20 mins
  • COOK

    12 mins

    45 mins


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the shortening and sugar until smooth. Stir in the molasses and egg. Dissolve the baking soda in warm coffee; stir into the molasses mixture. Combine the flour, salt, cinnamon and cloves; Gradually stir into the batter. Mix in raisins. Form dough into 4 long strips lengthwise on the cookie sheets.
  3. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheets then cut each strip into 2 inch bars while still warm.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Feb 02, 2004

These were very good-- I'd just make a few changes to make them even better! Add about 3/4 cups extra flour to make sure the dough is "dough-y" enough, and chill for half an hour before trying to shape it. Make sure the coffee is strong so you get the flavor, and I added some ginger to add a kick to it. Also, these cookies spread and puff up, so make sure there's about 2 inches between the long strips on the cookie sheet-- I'd use two separate sheets.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Mar 08, 2013

This was OK. I made it for a high school bake sale because the reviews were so good but then I was disappointed. If I had to describe it, without the raisins, the texture reminds me of the walls of a gingerbread house we make at Christmas. As for the taste, it tastes like a graham cracker but with a lot less sugar and a lot less crispy. This is a soft cookie but crispy on edges. I drizzled some white almond bark on top and woh did it make a difference. It made a good presentation and actually brought out the flavors of the cookie.

Jul 06, 2011

These cookies are delicious! Five tips I learned after baking them a few times: 1) Hermits are an antique cookie dating back to colonial times. White flour was not available until the late 1800s, so these taste wonderful w/ the original whole wheat as long as you get fresh flour. Whole wheat flour should not be bitter. If it is, it is rancid and should be replaced w/ a different brand. 2) The problem w/ the sticky texture is caused by the egg, probably a recent addition to the recipe. I made it w/o the egg & the dough was easier to handle, & results superb. 3) Don't mix the soda w/ the coffe. Put it w/ the dry ingredients so it retains its leavening power. 4) A tasty variation is to sub frozen oj concentrate & grated orange zest for the coffee. This version needs less sugar. 5) It can be made as a single 1/3" layer instead of strips, cooked a few minutes more, & sliced while warm, if you'd rather not fiddle w/ the dough. Also I agree w/ reviewers who recommend increasing the spices. These end up the tastiest "healthy" cookie I've ever had.

Jul 06, 2008

Much to my father's dismay, our local bakery outlet store (Freihofer's) discontinued making their Hermit Bar Cookies. I've tried several recipes and this comes the closest to the original. When I made them as bars, they never baked to the right consistency, so I tried them as drop cookies and they're perfect. (12 minutes per batch, same temperature - I also chopped the 1 cup raisins for better consistency). This will be a keeper in our family now for generations!

Dec 20, 2003

Thank you so very much for a recipe that really brings me back to my childhood. My mother used to buy these cookies at for me the Danvers Port Bakery in Massachusetts as a treat! These are even better! I love love love them! What more can I say! Are these cookies East coast thing? I asked many people if they had heard of them (I live in California now) and they had never heard of them.

Feb 28, 2003

WOW! These are FANTASTIC!!! I love hermits, but I've never made them with coffee before. Holy cow did these receive a great amount of praise from the 20 people I served a double batch to. They were all gone. A definate keeper!!!

Dec 05, 2005

These are wonderful. My husband used to get them in the north end. A part of Boston Ma. as a child with his parents. The coffee is what makes the flavor. Like a rich spice cake. He is so happy I found this recipe. He does want more raisin's next time

Nov 20, 2008

This is the real thing,I sugest you add more raisins.and eggwash the top (1 egg 1 tablespoon of milk whipped together with a fork before bakeing )use a pizza cutter to cut these also refriderate the dough for 1 hour it is easyer to handie roll out on a flourered cutting board


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  • Calories
  • 96 kcal
  • 5%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 17.3 g
  • 6%
  • Cholesterol
  • 4 mg
  • 1%
  • Fat
  • 2.7 g
  • 4%
  • Fiber
  • 0.4 g
  • 2%
  • Protein
  • 1.2 g
  • 2%
  • Sodium
  • 62 mg
  • 2%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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